By Taxi or Car Service
When distances are great, the weather is miserable, you have got bags to bog you down, or you are just too plain tired to schlep otherwise, hopping in a taxi or calling a car service is the most suitable and direct way to get around town (though note that this taxi route can be very pricey — yellow taxi fares start at $2.50 and increase 50¢ each one-fifth of a mile). That is, when the city’s annoying traffic conditions allow for it — dare to hop in a taxi during the climax of rush hour, and you’ll risk covering the route a little more than a snail’s pace.
New York city’s fleet of yellow taxis (or rather green Boro Taxis, which are dedicated to servicing the four NYC boroughs surpassing Manhattan — as well as upper Manhattan above E. 96th St.) are authorized by the Taxi and Limousine Commission, and can be signaled curbside on demand with just a wave of the arm, 24 hours a day. Simply take note of the roof medallion light on top of the cab — if the light is out, it’s already filled and will breeze right by you, despite how you might flail. Moreover, be forewarned: Hailing cabs during the peak-demand intervals, like rush hour or when it’s raining, can be an apparently impossible feat. Note that a cab can hold a maximum of four passengers (Even though one additional kid under the age of 7 is permitted if seated on an adult passenger’s lap), so prepare accordingly.
There are likewise plenty of call-up car services, also, like Dial 7 (212/777–7777) or Carmel (212/666–6666), that you can book for door-to-door service in prior (but note they are typically priced at a premium to yellow taxicabs), while ride-sharing car services like Lyft and Uber are another convenient option, with both touting abundant cars on call throughout the city.
While it is easy to forget, New York City is an island destination, with the districts spread out over Staten Island, Manhattan Island, and Brooklyn and Queens sharing the space on Long Island; in fact, just the Bronx is connected to the mainland U.S. It fits then that navigating through the city by its waterways is not only totally feasible but downright enjoyable, especially during warmer days. The NYC Ferry system saw a tremendous expansion in 2017, with amounts of new routes cropping up between Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn along the East River waterway and beyond — and all given for the same price as a subway fare of ($2.75), to boot. Just Hop on board for a ride on over to newly debuted locations like Astoria, Queens, for its exceptional Greek food or museums, or the Rockaways, for beaches and surfing.
Of course, there is the Staten Island Ferry, too, which will zip you over to Staten Island absolutely for free — not only does it extend some of the best views of Lady Liberty and New York Harbor, but 2019 will welcome the debut of the world’s biggest Ferris wheel alongst with the Empire Outlets, NYC’s very first outlet mall, both set to open their doors just a few steps from the Staten Island ferry station.
Further worth looking into is the New York Water Taxi, which operates between the west and east sides of Manhattan, with stops at favorite tourist scenes like the World Trade Center, the Brooklyn waterfront at DUMBO and the South Street Seaport— you can get an all-day pass for just $35.
Navigating the city on two wheels is not only good for our environment and your health but can really be quite fun, too. Fortunately, the city has taken great moves over the last decade to develop city infrastructure for cyclists, with a slate of assigned bike lanes now implemented throughout the town. (You can find an excellent downloadable bike map that is published by the NYC Department of Transportation for an impression of available routes.)
If you do not own your own bicycle, you can hire one for a half or full day (or longer) from various city bike shops (like Bike and Roll or Blazing Saddles), or you can even look into New York City’s bike-sharing system, Citi Bike, which began in 2013, bringing about10,000 bikes to some 600 bike stations over Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. Citi Bike rentals are available all around the clock, with daily, three-day, and yearly passes available.